Guatemala Facts


Guatemala, State of Central America; 109,000 km2, 17.2 million residents (2019).Guatemala borders west and north to Mexico, northeast to Belize and southeast to El Salvador and Honduras, and has a south coastal strip to the Pacific and to the east a narrow coastal strip to the Atlantic. The capital is Guatemala City (994,300 residents, 2018).

Guatemala Country Flag

Country facts

  • Republic of Guatemala / Republic of Guatemala
  • Country abbreviation: GT
  • Area: 109 000 km2
  • Population (2019): 17.2 million residents
  • Capital: Guatemala City
  • Main language: Spanish
  • State: Republic
  • Head of State and Head of Government: Alejandro Giammattei (President)
  • Per capita GDP (2018): US $ 4,549
  • GNI per capita (2018): US $ 4,410
  • Currency unit: 1 quetzal = 100 centavos
  • Currency code: GTQ
  • Country number (telephony): 502
  • Internet Domain Name: gt
  • Time difference compared to Sweden: −7
  • National Day: September 15 (Independence Day, 1821)

Nature

  • Land use: forest (53%), agricultural land (16%), other (31%)
  • Highest mountain: Tajumulco (4,220 m above sea level)

Population

  • Population density (2019): 158 residents per km2
  • Natural population growth (2019): 1.8%; birthrate 23 ‰, death count 5 ‰
  • Age structure (2019): 0-14 years (35%), 15-64 (60%), 65- (5%)
  • Life expectancy (2019): men 69 years, women 76 years
  • Infant mortality (2019): 20 per 1,000 live births
  • Population forecast 2050: 27 million residents
  • HDI (2017): 0.650 (place 127 of 189)
  • Urbanization rate (2019): 51%
  • Most populous cities (2018): Guatemala City (994,300 residents), Villa Nueva (489,000), Mixco (474,400)

Business

  • Industry’s contribution to GDP (2017): agriculture (13%), industry (24%), service (63%)
  • Exports (2017): USD 11,120 million
  • Main export products: textiles, coffee, sugar, oil
  • Main exporting countries: USA, El Salvador, Honduras
  • Imports (2017): US $ 17,110 million
  • Main import products: oil, machinery, building materials
  • Main importing countries: USA, China, Mexico
  • Railway network (2018): 800 km

Guatemala’s interior is occupied by the foothills of the Central American mountain range, while northern Guatemala is a low, flat and inaccessible part of the Yucatán Peninsula.

According to the constitution, the country is governed by a president who is both head of state and government. This is elected by absolute majority for four years. Parliament, which is elected every four years, has the legislative power.

Guatemala’s business is dominated by agriculture, which in recent years, however, has reduced its share of GDP. Trade and manufacturing are other important industries. The country’s exports are based on agricultural products such as coffee, sugar, bananas and cardamom. Falling world market prices for coffee have, since 1998, entailed constantly declining revenue from coffee exports, which in turn has had profound negative consequences for the country’s economy.

The tourism industry was exposed to international boycotts in the early 1980s, but increased again during the 1990s and 00s. In 2009, the country was hit by severe drought and received international help.

Guatemala Map

Guatemala Map

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